August 10, 2009 by  
Filed under NBM Blog

Joe and Azat starts with a taxi ride and it ends with a taxi ride. These two rides work as bookends for the story. One taxi takes you in, another takes you out. In reality it was a Lufthansa jet that brought me to Turkmenistan and another one that took me out, but I thought […]

Girls, Girls, Girls.

August 3, 2009 by  
Filed under NBM Blog

My book Joe and Azat ends with a big wedding, and while I was in Turkmenistan I went to a lot of weddings. I also got a fair amount of pressure to get married. People who had known me for only five minutes would find out I was twenty-seven and immediately tell me I should […]


July 27, 2009 by  
Filed under NBM Blog

When I tell people my book is about the Peace Corps, they tend to think it’s a book about living in some hut with no electricity and no running water, which is pretty inaccurate. There was electricity. There were televisions. There were tons of satellite dishes. I probably drank more Coco-Cola and ate more Snickers […]


July 20, 2009 by  
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In my new book the former Turkmen leader Turkmenbashy isn’t a main character, but he’s very much a presence in the background of the story. I was in the country when he passed away (and I got to see his funeral procession which had a carriage holding his body pulled through the capital city of […]

Punch Out

July 13, 2009 by  
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Fights seemed common in Turkmenistan. I saw a few at weddings, a few on the street, and I broke up a few between boys at the schools I taught at. There was this sense of pride in Turkmenistan. To back down from a disagreement or to admit you were wrong was seen as a sign […]


July 6, 2009 by  
Filed under NBM Blog

A little bit more about Turkmenistan and the background for my new book Joe and Azat. One of the things that it took a little while to get used to in Turkmenistan was the money. The Turkmen manat was valued at about 25,000 to the dollar. The largest bill was for 10,000 manat. I made […]


June 29, 2009 by  
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I love drawing comics. I like sitting at my desk and figuring out how to lay out a page. I like the smell of india ink. Last Friday I decided to stay in and draw instead of going out for drinks. I love drawing comics. That being said, there are some drawbacks to comics. Sometimes […]

Fact and Fiction

June 22, 2009 by  
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It seems that a lot of people think that my comics are one hundred percent true. I remember being shocked when one of my friends said she assumed that all the stories in my comics actually happened to me. A number of people after reading my first book Flower and Fade asked me if I […]

Islam in Turkmenistan and in my book.

June 15, 2009 by  
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One of the things I always get asked when I tell people my new book is about Turkmenistan is if Turkmenistan is a Muslim country. It borders on Iran and Afghanistan and like both those countries the majority of Turkmen would claim to be Muslim. Unlike those two countries Turkmenistan was under Soviet rule for […]


May 10, 2009 by  
Filed under NBM Blog

So this weekend I finally had some time just to sit and think. I moved back to Boston last Sunday: packing unpacking, organizing, making lists of all the things I need, finding out where I can buy all those things that I need, figuring which combination of walking, bus and subway gets me to work […]

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